Amarr Unite!Tarek Raimo
“At first, the event was to be a 12 year celebration of the anniversary for Imperial Dreams, who, together with PIE Inc. founded the venerable Curatores Veritatis Alliance. However, as news progressed [of] the existing Drifter Threat, as well as the Empress’ Call for capsuleers to Unite and give their support to the Amarr Empire, [a] discussion with leaders from the Amarr loyalist bloc [followed, and] it was decided to expand the scope of the event to demonstrate the capsuleer community’s will and desire to unite for their Empress.
At the event, we will have three prolific speakers addressing the times, Amarr faith, and the existing Drifter threat. We have also been in contact with the Imperial Navy by way of expressing a desire to contract a gift to the Empress and her Navy.”Obviously, as a member of the Gallente Militia I could not fly to that event myself, so I sent a neutral alt to act as correspondent. Funny enough, this is a Minmatar character but the Amarr RP contingent, represented by Kahar Dex, treated me with the necessary respect. As Kahar Dex told me:
“The reason why it was decided to allow the event to be “open” to neutrals, and even hostile parties, is based on the firm belief, that in obedience of the scriptures, we give God glory. When a seeker, or even a doubter were to attend and see the majesty of gathered Amarrians under God, it would be a testimony of grandeur, and would perhaps even result in their final willingness to submit themselves to God and convert to the Amarr faith. We are, and always have been open to other races wanting to witness the glories of the Empire.”He even offered—or rather insisted—to send an escort which would bring me from Orvolle to Sarum Prime. That escort was a detachment from The Shadows Of EVE (TSOE), a small Provi Bloc alliance living in a few systems of southern Providence called the 2V Pocket. According to their leader 5hadow 1, they are like a tribe of natives living off the land and defending it from whomever encroaches upon it, if they must. Taking their assignment quite seriously, they took me through a dozen jumps of highsec with the caution and diligence one would apply to moving expensive or important cargo through nullsec, including scouts all along the route and cloaked warping. I was even told to fit warp core stabs, something I otherwise only do on my blockade runner which is supposed to get valuable cargo past gate-camps in lowsec and nullsec. During the flight, 5hadow 1 elaborated further on the TSOE philosophy, which emphasizes casual gameplay without the CTAs and political metagame often found among null sov alliances. They also value mature conduct and decent behaviour highly among their members, including a strict adherence to the NRDS rule that applies throughout the Provi Bloc community. Upon arriving at the Mekhios Graveyard, I was invited to two in-character channels. One represented the public assembled inside the Providence-class freighter designated as the Starliner Regency Amarr. The other channel represented the speaker’s podium. There was good attendance from a large number of Amarr loyalists, roleplayers and some Caldari allies including our neighbours from Templis CALSF. There were fireworks, conga lines, and casual RP going on while different players took the stage and gave speeches. As one would expect, the loyalist luminaries Rodj Blake, Lord Hardin, and JedsZero dealt with congratulations to CVA and Imperial Dreams, and the current in-game events. Here are some quotes:
“In addition to being the 12th anniversary of the CVA, we are also celebrating the 11th year of ‘Operation Deliverance’—a project that remains close to my heart and the heart of many here. […] Today Amarr and the Deliverance Project face new challenges and new enemies—many of which are formidable. But I have faith in the Empire—and more importantly, faith in the pod pilots to continue protecting Amarrian values throughout the galaxy.” —Lord Hardin
“Our Empire, and our Empress, are currently being threatened by forces from both known and unknown space. There are reports of a new Emperor laying claim to the throne, there are Drifter battleships patrolling our space, attacking our fellow citizens. Amid all these threats, our Empress has called for unity…because she knows that unity will make us all stronger. Unity will enable us to prevail over any enemy. Especially the presence of Drifter battleships in the most secure…and most sacred…areas of Amarr Space cannot be allowed. This is why the Empress is attempting to bring unity and stability to New Eden.” —JedsZeroThe Empress herself did not make an appearance, but CCP actors did their part standing in as Admiral Ren Karetta and Commodore Taidis Rolti of the Imperial Navy.
“Grand Admiral Sundara and Her Majesty Empress Jamyl I offer their most sincere thanks to CVA, PIE, and all other loyalists who stand in support of the Golden Fleet in service of God and Empire during these troubled times. And of course, the Imperial Armed Forces offer our most sincere congratulations to Imperial Dreams on this, their twelfth anniversary celebration.” —Ren KarettaThe Imperial Dreams delegation offered Admiral Ren Karetta a contract for 1000 golden hulled ships as a gift to the Empress during a ceremony that marked the high point of the event. When JedsZero was coming to a close with his speech, the proceedings were suddenly interrupted by a system-wide alarm. A fleet of more than 100 Drifter battleships had appeared seemingly out of nowhere and were warping in on the assembled capsuleers.
An Amarr ship under concentrated fire from DriftersI could not see who shot first, but the grid lit up with laser flares and the green fire of Drifter weapons. Soon the ominous sound of the Drifter main cannon could be heard as they obliterated ship after ship with single shots. Despite the confusion, the Amarr loyalists and Caldari supporters rallied their forces and began fighting back. When it seemed that the Drifters would overpower them, yet another contingent of Amarr loyalist capsuleers warped in and the tide of the battle turned. The judicious use of ECM and sensor dampeners proved to be effective in containing the Drifters to some extent. Despite suffering heavy losses, the defenders were eventually successful in holding the field against the Drifters who were all destroyed or routed within twenty minutes of heated battle.
The Amarr relief contingent warping inSmall skirmishes carried on when several players gained suspect timers for looting. In the meantime, JedsZero returned to the podium channel to conclude his interrupted speech:
“Although I believe the Drifters are the biggest threat to the Empire, they are not the only threat we face. We have all read the reports and heard the announcements made by The Imperium, and they can only be interpreted one way. They mean to remove our beloved Empress from her rightful throne, but even more importantly, it stands in the way of a Unified Amarrian Bloc. It threatens to divide us at the hour during which unity is of the utmost importance. The Drifter threat is real, it is immediate, and it will not go away… in fact, if we are to believe the most recent reports, what we have seen of the Drifters so far is only the beginning. If there ever was a time for all of us to stand united in the defense of all that is Holy…in defense of the glorious Amarr Empire…then that time is now! We need to set aside our differences, and stand together!”This was the most direct statement against The Imperium during the whole proceedings. It was followed by the presentation of a propaganda art-piece by Vaari of Silent Infinity that showed Max Singularity as a tentacled monster.
Vaari’s propaganda artworkContrary to my expectations that they would make an appearance, the Amarr roleplayers from Deklein did not show up, but Max Singularity appeared in full cosplay regalia on TMC’s The Meta Show later the same day. He did not comment on the event itself, but he did re-iterate that Jamyl Sarum fails as a leader, and that the great houses of the Empire should, “rein in their wayward child.” Despite the fact that The Imperium has both issued a roleplaying-related challenge to the Amarr Empire and announced that they would attack Providence as soon as the sov mechanics change, the Amarr loyalists do not appear overly concerned. Kahar Dex had this to say:
“Max Singularity, as an Amarrian, has been invited to attend as an observer. He has given us assurances that the Imperium that backs him will not make hostile moves against us. If this does happen, then the entire cluster can take him as a harbinger of lies. The reason for issuing an invitation to him in the first place was the need to draw closer together for dialogue, for perhaps the impending Drifter threat is a test of God to see that we as loyalists can put aside petty sectarianism, and stand behind the Empire in its time of need.”Corebloodbrothers of Volition Cult—another Provi Bloc member—has said in an interview with EVEnews24 that the attacks by the Imperium will most likely function only as a test of the new sov system, and that he is confident the Providence residents will be able to return even if they are initially evicted from some systems. The Imperium leader The Mittani stated on The Meta Show that he does not intend to completely destroy Providence either. He does however expect the Jamyl Sarum loyalists to “bend the knee and kiss the ring of the true emperor.” Maximilian Singularity himself said that The Imperium are liberators who want to free the “brainwashed” from the influence of their false Empress. In the end, it was a nice enough way to spend an afternoon, and the event created enough new material to expand on for lore fans and roleplayers alike. Why did the Drifters attack? Where did they come from in such force without anybody noticing them? Why did the Imperial Navy not respond? Why didn’t CONCORD either? How will Amarr loyalists, the Empire, and The Imperium proceed after this? As the echoes of “Amarr Victor” cries subside, those questions will surely be on the minds of many players, and hopefully the CCP members who drive that story forward as well.